mechanical Doping

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mechanical Doping

Postby NUKe » 21 Mar 2018, 4:48pm
got a mention on Radio 4's today programme.
what do you think apparently more amatures have been caught and only 1 pro .
Is this somebody going over board .

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Re: mechanical Doping

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 21 Mar 2018, 5:06pm

Its old news and there are threads here too, just thought I would mention it.
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Re: mechanical Doping

Postby rjb » 21 Mar 2018, 5:42pm

Perhaps they used to level the playing field against those who have a TUE.
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Re: mechanical Doping

Postby CJ » 21 Mar 2018, 6:16pm

UCI invited the thin end of this wedge when they allowed electrically assisted shifting, without requiring that the battery charge be maintained by the motion of the bicycle.

Don't get me wrong, I have no objection to electrically-assisted cycles for general use, they are great for getting and keeping less able cyclists cycling, and up to the legal limit of 250W, I don't care whether it's just the shifting or the propulsion of the bike that's assisted. But in competition: any reliance upon mains-charged or chemical stored energy, however small, is CHEATING.

Since the invention of the electronic speed/mileometer in the 1970s, we've gradually allowed these aids to replace much of the skill that was previously required to pace oneself and allowed race radios to replace other skills, team tactics and the element of chance. We let the purity of sport be nibbled away by these artificially powered aids. Back then there was no realistic prospect of the rider self-powering these devices. But now we most certainly do have the technology.

Yes there is a little drag from a generator in the hub, bottom-bracket, jockey pulley, wherever. But the people who pooh-pooh my idea on those grounds also argue that the power consumption of shifters, radios etc, is so trivial that the spectators of cycle sport should not fuss about it. Well you can't have it BOTH ways! If the power is insignificant then so should be the drag. And if it isn't, then by making this rule the UCI would create an incentive for manufacturers to apply the state of the art and make it so!

There surely must be some performance gain from having electric-assisted shifting etc, else nobody would want these aids. So lets find out if those gains are worth the cost of a tiny extra effort. If they aren't then my point is proved beyond doubt that their use in a competitive event is CHEATING!

Why am I riding this hobbyhorse? Because the bicycle - prior to the electronic age - was a purely human-powered machine and there's something fine about that. A touring bike equipped with a hub dynamo operating its lights and recharging its gadgets, is once again made pure. Not that touring needs to be. I repeat, I've got nothing against electric assist for general use. Likewise I don't mind whatever quantity of whichever medication anyone needs simply to get them some place by bike! EPO? I could have done with some of that in the Himalayas! Sport however is supposed to be pure as the driven snow. By further refining the technology of touring, it COULD be once again. And so then it should be.

Just as sport is closing the door on drugs, it should be pushing back the thin end of the electro-mechanical-doping wedge. Because it can, and the developments that incentivises will make the bicycle even more convenient to use.
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